Dr Samuel Annor, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), has expressed concern about the dire financial state of Ghana’s National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
He said the Scheme which provided equitable access and financial coverage for basic health care services to the Ghanaian population ought to be supported and sustained.
Dr Annor told Journalists in Wa, the Upper West regional capital, on Tuesday that in view of the reeling state of the Scheme, the Authority was on nationwide tour to discuss with stakeholders about how to sustain the scheme.
“What brought us to this region is the fact that, we found our National Health Insurance Scheme is in trouble,” he said: “and we took the effort to go round the country to interact with patients, members, our Staff, organised labour to discuss on what we believe to be the way forward.”
Public Sector Workers Union, Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), Civil and Local Government Staff Association of Ghana and Coalition of Concerned Teachers (CCT) and among others participated in the discussion.
The CEO said the Authority had come out with models for implementation towards the scheme’s sustainability that range from financing to firming its foundation.
“At the moment, we have put in the health basket 2.5 per cent VAT and 2.5 per cent SSNIT contribution to look after our sick people, but that amount of money is only equal to about 30 dollars for one person a year,” he said, but added that the amount ought to increase up to 100 dollars.
“Now that we’re being told by Nana Akuffo-Addo -led government that our health is imperative, let us not let this opportunity go by,” he added.
“Let us put the laws and rules that will take politics out of the NHIS because sickness hasn’t gotten any political colour.”
He called for a national action including; the media and labour unions to help find lasting solutions to myriad of problems challenging the NHIS.
The Trades Union Congress Deputy Secretary-General, Mr Joshua Ansah, urged labour unionists to contribute to the sustainability of the scheme.
Ghanaians should aspire and share their minds to help sustain the scheme either than taking a back seat, he said.
“Once it is a health issue, we as leaders and unionists, we must all have good intention for the scheme because I believe that health is more important than all the salaries we are taking,” Mr Ansah said.